Prefab VS Custom Orthotics. We Have Questions. Can You Answer Them?

Here at Bartold Clinical, we scan the scientific databases every day to bring you the most up to date and evidence-based information available. Today we are going to beg your indulgence, by asking you to participate in an appraisal of a paper published recently regarding Prefab vs Custom Orthotics. We Have Questions. Can You Provide…

Simon Bartold
Director of Bartold Clinical

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4 responses to “Prefab VS Custom Orthotics. We Have Questions. Can You Answer Them?”

  1. Theses studies make my head hurt.

    There is so much here that annoys me but I will focus on two things. Firstly, hard versus soft. A 3mm or more thickness polypropylene, or it’s nylon successor, with a big hard heel post is going to be very hard. A 2.5mm or less device made of the same material with no heel post is going to be pretty soft. A high density EVA device with a high arch contour will feel quite hard, while a low density version with a modest contour will be comparatively soft. Too often in comparison type studies, shell material type is the determining element differentiating the difference between hard and soft. This is a significant flaw in my opinion.

    Secondly, if a prescription device is to be truly “prescription” it will need to vary from one individual to another. By using the same prescription for each subject in that half of the study, there will inevitably be different results because of the appropriateness, or lack of, to individual needs. For the “hardness” issue alone – depending on how closely the device matches the real world option that a professional Podiatrist would make – the device may feel too hard or soft. When each subject is issued a pair of devices, all made to the same specifications, they are receiving an individually manufactured generic device.

    Steve McMurray

    • 100% Steve.. we think the study is shot full of holes, but the most glaring issue is the same prescription for all. Just shines a spotlight on the big issue with orthoses studies.. the researchers do not seem to understand the concept of dosage, and therefore the vast majority of these studies are completely meaningless, or, worse, misleading.. best S

  2. An orthotic device should truly be as you coined “dose specific” or as I have heard others use(me included)…Pathology specific. This study doesn’t even know what pathology they are looking at. Is it fasciitis, fasciosis, bone edema, tenosynovitis….you get the picture.

    Are similar studies conducted between prescription eyewear and OTC cheaters?

    Thanks for stimulating and frustrating me at the same time 😉

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